renay: artist rendition of the center of a nebula (Default)
[personal profile] renay posting in [community profile] ladybusiness

My first book of 2019 was The Cloud Roads, which was a reread for me. I've declared 2019 the year I reread books without shame so I can catch up on all the series I'm following. The Cloud Roads is about polyamorous cuddle murder dragons fighting some chompy murder dragons with a side of dark secrets, biological warfare, and navigating complicated relationships in a very specific hierarchy where the rules are invisible because just like you, dear reader, our Hero is an Lone Outsider.

Many of us love Martha Wells for her excellent stories about Murderbot in the Murderbot Diaries. Having read all of those and The Cloud Roads, so far what I'm getting is that Martha Wells likes to write stories about sulky people who are resentful that they aren't immune to needing companionship and figuring out how they get to a place where they can accept it. The Cloud Roads is about Moon, a lone shape-shifter who is often mistaken as one of the evil Fell and thrown out of the groundling settlements he's been trying to belong to since the rest of his family was killed.

That all changes when he meets another cuddle murder dragon called Stone, but accepting Stone's offer to travel to the Court of Indigo Cloud to meet Moon's people—the Raksura—comes with six heaping bags of shenanigans from both inside (Salty Queens) and outside (chompy murder dragons).

The main draw for me in this series is the relationships, because there's a lot of neat power dynamics and potentially legit poly representation in later books. Although, this book doesn't shy away from mentioning poly sexual relationships and is solid "I don't know him" about toxic masculinity, leaving most of that to the Queens of the Court. Refreshing and novel! I have high hopes for later books and the relationships that Moon chooses for himself.

Maybe you've been sleeping on Martha Wells and her secondary world fantasy, or have finished Murderbot's adventures and are looking for the next place to go. Spending some time with the Raksura should be on your list. If you like disgruntled protagonists, shape-shifters, cuddling among pals, murder-via-poisoned-ally, and reading about the heroes eating raw animals, The Cloud Roads may be for you! Please join me in reading about the poly cuddle murder dragons.

Date: 2019-01-10 07:52 am (UTC)
st_aurafina: Rainbow DNA (Default)
From: [personal profile] st_aurafina
polyamorous cuddle murder dragons fighting some chompy murder dragons with a side of dark secrets, biological warfare, and navigating complicated relationships in a very specific hierarchy where the rules are invisible

This is such an excellent description of The Cloud Roads!! I just read it out loud to my GF who I'm trying to convince to read the books. Thank you!

Date: 2019-01-10 10:29 am (UTC)
schneefink: River walking among trees, from "Safe" (Default)
From: [personal profile] schneefink
+1 Yeah that fits perfectly xD

Date: 2019-01-10 07:21 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
I was just going to quote that as such an awesome description of this book. So perfect!

I have yet to read on in this series, but it was a great story and I know I will get back to the series.

Date: 2019-01-10 07:37 pm (UTC)
bibliofile: Fan & papers in a stack (from my own photo) (Default)
From: [personal profile] bibliofile
It's a convincing description! I often avoid books with dragons in them because I'm jaded, but multiple kinds of murder dragons?! Excellent.

Date: 2019-01-10 12:45 pm (UTC)
kass: kitten face (Default)
From: [personal profile] kass
I have loved Murderbot, and you are making me want to try The Cloud Roads. "Poly cuddle murder dragons" is just a great phrase. I am intrigued. :-D

Date: 2019-01-11 08:14 pm (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
I think of it as maybe solarpunk?

Date: 2019-01-10 01:04 pm (UTC)
princessofgeeks: (Default)
From: [personal profile] princessofgeeks
I adore all the Raksura books and novellas and have read them several times. I also got my 18 year old son hooked on them and he loved them too.

Date: 2019-01-10 01:36 pm (UTC)
oracne: turtle (Default)
From: [personal profile] oracne
polyamorous cuddle murder dragons


Date: 2019-01-10 03:07 pm (UTC)
ginny_t: A panda hugs a comma or apostrophe (comma)
From: [personal profile] ginny_t
"Poly cuddle murder dragons" is the best description. I'm going to adopt it. (Well, I want to, but I'll probably get it all wrong.)

I really love these books.

Date: 2019-01-10 05:05 pm (UTC)
monanotlisa: Chime giving Moon the side-eye for breaking protocol again. (chime & moon - raksura)
From: [personal profile] monanotlisa
I LOVE The Cloud Roads! Relevant icon...

Date: 2019-01-11 08:15 pm (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri

like, i love Murderbot, but i am most grateful to Murderbot because otherwise i wouldn't know about the Raksura

Date: 2019-01-13 07:03 am (UTC)
laleia: (Default)
From: [personal profile] laleia
I read this book for the first time last year and promptly devoured all of the sequels!

In the last few years, I’ve read a lot of very mediocre paranormal romance novels about Our Heroine who discovers she is the Last Female *Insert Fantasy Species Here* who is promptly expected to both rule the rest of her newly-rediscovered kind but also singlehandedly repopulate the species. Fortunately there is a Hot Brooding Hero for her to repopulate the series with, etc. Even when these books weren’t terribly written, something within me objected to the premise.

It turns out, when you swap the genders, I eat it up like catnip! My favorite thing about this book was definitely the way it subverted the trope (though the interesting world building didn’t hurt)!


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